How to exclude a file from src/main/resources from the WAR file?

The question in the title of the post pretty much sums it up.

I am using the war plugin and the conventional file structure. In


I have a bunch of properties files, velocity templates, etc. I need to exclude one of these files from the WAR file.

Previously I have done something like:

war {

which excludes files relative to


. I have tried a few things but nothing seems to work. Looking for a simple solution.


Can you show a concrete file path and exclude expression that doesn’t work as you’d expect it to?

Well the file path I want to exclude from WEB-INF/classes is:


It’s not really that a particular expression is working unexpectedly – I’ve tried a few things that don’t seem to work, but in most I cases I think I understand why. So now I just can’t find one that does what I want and trial and error is getting tiresome.

Here are some examples of what I’ve tried:

//try 1 (doesn't work)
//try 2 (doesn't affect resources copied to classes/ dir)
   exclude ''
//try 3
excludes = ['**/']
//try 4: doesn't exclude the file and has weird effect of duplicating all jars in WEB-INF/lib...
classpath = classpath - files('resources/')

‘exclude “WEB-INF/classes/”’ doesn’t work? (You should first make sure that the path is correct by looking into the War, e.g. with ‘jar -tf path/to/war’).

No that doesn’t work. Correct me if I’m wrong, but it’s not building the war file from there is it? It uses the stuff inside of ‘build/’ such as ‘build/resources/main/’.

But I don’t know how to exclude that. If you see my previous post I tried 'exclude ‘…/resources/’.

And just to be clear this is in the context of the war configuration such as:

war {
  dependsOn x, y, z
    manifest {
    archiveName = 'MyApp.war'
    //TODO: fill in the blank how to exclude src/main/resources/

Yeah that works. Are you going to change the ‘War’ task in some way?


The design seems to be intentional, and the soonest we could change it would be Gradle 2.0.

Sorry you are right. You’ll have to exclude based on, and relative to, the source path. However, for some reason the ‘War’ task shields ‘WEB-INF’ content from direct modification. Eventually I came up with this solution:

war.rootSpec.exclude ""